Email marketing continues to be one of the most effective tactics. Nearly 80% of marketers are using email more than they were two years ago. Email is also popular because it continues to be an inexpensive way to get your message in front of a targeted audience. Email platforms are also more sophisticated allowing for better targeting and measurement.
Let's review some key elements to make your next email campaign a success.
1. Write a Compelling Subject Line
The goal of your email should be to get a response; not sell your wares.
Here are some effective subject line examples:
- How to use [product/service] to [benefit]
- [Mutual connection] recommended I get in touch.
- Ideas for [what’s important to them].
- Question about [recent trigger event].
- Question about [a goal they have].
- Thoughts about [title of their blog post].
- Have you considered [thought/recommendation]?
2. Properly Time Your Emails
Most business emails are sent during business hours. But recent data shows something interesting. In the graph below, notice that the worst days for open rates are Monday and Tuesday. However, the open rate gradually increases over the course of the week and then spikes on Saturday and Sunday.
3. Don't Use a Generic Sender Address
The name you include in the “From” field of your email can have a huge impact on your overall open rates. There’s been a number of studies that show sending emails from an actual person increases both the open and click through rates.
Contacts feel a more personal connection to your email when they receive it from an actual person rather than from Company X, or worse, some version of “donotreply.com.”
4. Personalize Beyond "Hi [First Name]"
Personalizing in today’s business environment involves taking the time to learn about the individual you’re connecting with. See the sample email below for a few ways to further personalize your emails.
Notice the reference to an event in the recipient’s life.
Connect the recipient’s expertise with your own as the sender.
Include a Next Step: Provides a specific time frame to chat.
5. Avoid the "Just Checking In" Email
I have been guilty of sending this type of email many times. On the surface it doesn't seem so bad. But from the recipient's perspective, it's a bit selfish. This email adds no value, and it asks for something without giving anything in return. The call to action is also too generic rather than giving a specific next step. Unless you already have a good working relationship with the recipient, avoid this one.
Remember to include a link to helpful, informative content. This provides value and also a way to measure if the reader has interacted with your email.
6. Optimize for Mobile Users
More email is read on mobile than on a desktop email client. (Source: Litmus). With that in mind, we recommend keeping your emails to 3 to 6 sentences, not 3 to 6 paragraphs. Enough said on that one.
7. Include an Specific Next Step
In addition to getting a response from the reader, what is your goal for the reader of this email?
Whether it’s downloading a piece of content, scheduling a time to connect, or sharing information for a job opening, every goal needs to be stated strategically with its respect next step.
Let’s say the goal is to find a time to connect. Many best practices suggest finding an open spot on your calendar, and recommending a few. This may look like:
“Are you free to chat at 10 AM, 2PM or 5PM Monday or Tuesday?”
But here’s the problem with this – what if the recipient isn’t available at those times? Should we expect them to find an open time? Or do we think they’ll get too busy with their work and just ignore your email for now?
Remember, the main goal of this email is to get a response – make it easy by saying something like:
“Would you be willing to chat for ten minutes next week?”
This accomplishes the following:
1. It makes it super easy to get a response – it’s either yes or no.
2. A light ask for “ten minutes” shows you’re not demanding too much.
3. There’s a clear response the recipient has to give to show interest in engaging with you.
8. Be Patient
Just because you don't get a response in the first 48 hours doesn't mean your recipient is not considering your offer. Give them some time and avoid the temptation of sending another email. Instead use the technology included in most email platforms that will show you if they opened or clicked on a link in your email. If after a few days you see they haven't "opened" your email, then nudge them with a follow up email reminding them of the benefits of your offer.
IN CONCLUSION: HERE'S A TEMPLATE TO HELP YOU SEND MORE EFFECTIVE EMAIL
Take Your Email to the Next Level—Optimize For Conversions.
Learn how to:
- How to grow your email list
- Increase engagement and open rates
- Ensure better deliverability
- How to integrate email into an inbound marketing strategy
- How to better segment